While stumbling through life, I occasionally discover treasure. Such was the case as I wrote my last blog post. I titled it “Not Helpful”. While writing the post, those words kept popping up…”Helpful” and “Not Helpful”.
Over the last couple of days I have found myself repeating those words in my head as a reaction to situations. And those words have been most helpful.
It’s helping to identify actions, behaviors, and worries as beneficial or not. That goes a long way in eliminating stress and achieving a small measure of peace.
For example, I was planning on picking back up on my decluttering project. The house has slowly gotten a bit fuller and I’ve realized that decluttering is going to be an ongoing effort for me. An untidy house with piles of stuff and lost objects is stressful. Not helpful.
I got an email about joining a decluttering challenge about two weeks ago. It sounded like it would be helpful and fun. Each day there would be an assignment to work on, and there was a facebook page to join and chat on. That sounds good…right?
Yesterday, I got my morning email from the group and failed to open it. Why? Because I had not yet opened email number 1….or two….or… You get the idea. I had not logged onto the facebook page and introduced myself. I sighed heavily as I looked around my house and at the long list of emails. I started berating myself for yet another thing that I hadn’t kept up with or done.
That kind of thinking is not helpful.
I don’t need more perceived failures and recrimination.
The group was supposed to assist me in achieving my goals. It was supposed to be helpful.
It was not.
I unsubscribed to the group and started setting up my studio…still undone from the move quite a while back. But, I’m working on it and have filled a trash bag and a giveaway bag during the process.
You can barely walk in there and there is still a ways to go, but it’s a small win for today.
Letting go of what’s not working, or what’s not helpful is difficult. Sometimes it just feels like quitting or failing.
I have to keep reminding myself of what the goal is…of the direction I am trying to go…
In this case, the goal was not to successfully complete the decluttering challenge.
My goal was to simplify by decluttering unnecessary items and find peace.
Two very different destinations.
Confusing the two was just a “not helpful” part of the journey.
Now that I have checked my map (clarified my actual goal), I can once again start moving in the right direction. There will, undoubtedly be more detours. In fact, this was a challenging day filled with road blocks…
…but I had figured out where I was going and that was helpful.